Can summer be far behind? Minnesota State Fair announces three Grandstand Concert acts

There’s hope it will get warmer: the Minnesota State Fair has announced three acts for their 2014 Grandstand series. Linkin Park & Thirty Seconds to Mars with special guest AFI is confirmed for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 26. Tickets are $81 (general admission and reserved seating), $71 (reserved seating) and $51 (reserved seating) and go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, March 7. Kid Rock is set for 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. Continue Reading

Singing in the Rain at the Oscars — At least it isn’t snow

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA—Legend has it that it has never rained on Oscar Sunday. It may rain the day before, or the day after, but the clouds part for Hollywood royalty stepping onto the Red Carpet. This year, after record droughts, the rains have unleashed on Oscar Week. Text alerts about flash floods, flooding streets, a soggy, plastic covered Red Carpet and wrapped Oscar statues have wreaked havoc on Academy Awards staff. The media sections along the Red Carpet arrival areas have been cut in half because the carpet is just too wet. Continue Reading

Oscar nominees receive Minnesota products

VENICE, CALIFORNIA—Bette Midler’s Emmy loss to Kirstie Alley (1994) inspired Lash Fary to create a company to help ease the sting of not winning an entertainment award. “Bette said, ‘We get all dressed up, perform and go home with nothing,’” recalled Fary in an interview at the Westminster Photo Studio in Venice. Fary introduces products and services to the entertainment industry and develops celebrity-oriented promotions and events. His LA based firm, Distinctive Assets, launched the celebrity swag bag craze 15 years ago to console non-winning Oscar nominees. “Winners get an Oscar, so we give these gift bags as consolations to nominees,” Fary said. Continue Reading

86th Academy Awards: Tweet yourself to the Red Carpet

You have to give the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences credit for keeping up with the latest social media. The Oscars have come a long way from their first dinner recognizing the best in film industry in 1927. Those 1927 honorees could not have imagined the changes in technology, allowing movie buffs to be closer than ever to the Academy Awards. For the first time, Oscar fans watching the “Oscars Red Carpet Live” show on March 2 on ABC will have the opportunity to see themselves next to the stars on the red carpet through Twitter. Starting Tuesday, fans who follow @academy and tweet a red carpet-ready photo of themselves using hashtag #MyOscarPhoto will be eligible to have their photo featured on the red carpet. Continue Reading

Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championship 2014 at the Cathedral of Saint Paul: Cold weather, warm fans

Maybe it was cabin fever that drove a record 120,000 spectators to the Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championship 2014 at the Cathedral of Saint Paul. Strollers pushed through massive amounts of snow, ladies terribly underdressed, guys jumping over and into snow banks, and plenty of hardy children. Everyone seemed to be having a great time. The Cathedral of Saint Paul was an exceptional host, opening up their doors to let in the huddled masses—for a temporary escape from the bitter wind (“Want to Hide from the Cold Weather at the Cathedral of Saint Paul?”).The concurrent Winter Olympics in Sochi infused onlookers with patriotism and American flags were in abundance. But in the end, it was an Austrian, Marco Dallago, who won the event. Continue Reading

Red Bull Crashed Ice returns to St. Paul February 22

Red Bull Crashed Ice, the thrilling ice cross downhill sporting event, brings its world championship to battle the best of the International field in St. Paul February 22. The sport is Ice Cross Downhill; Red Bull Crashed Ice is the series. It is a combination of hockey, boarder cross and downhill skiing. “It is known by many as the fastest sport on skates, but dictated by one goal: first to the bottom wins. Continue Reading

“We’ve shoveled off the Red Carpet for you:” Twin Cities 2014 Oscar gala

Minneapolis resident William Panzarella will be watching the 86th Academy Awards March 2 for lots of reasons. Panzarella not only helps run the Twin Cities’ premier Red Carpet viewing party, but his company, Max Martin Luxury Footwear, is part of the $80,000 swag bags given to Oscar nominees in Hollywood. Two local actors in Best Motion Picture nominee “Captain Phillips,” Mahat Ali (“Elmi”) and Barkhad Abdirahman (“Bilal”), plan to attend Panzarella’s 2014 Oscar Experience gala held at Muse Event Center. Minneapolis actor and resident Barkhad Abdi is an Oscar contender for Best Performance in a Supporting Role (“Muse”) in “Captain Phillips” and will be walking the actual Red Carpet at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles. Here in the Twin Cities, large TV screens donated by Best Buy will be televising the Academy Awards live at the viewing party and Minneapolis-based Freestyle Productions AV volunteers will make it an Oscar-worthy event. Continue Reading

In Olympic first, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses Sochi Olympics: “use sport for social change, equality”

In an Olympic first, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today addressed the International Olympic Committee Session in advance of the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi. “Today I am in Sochi to witness countries uniting in a spirit of friendly competition and goodwill,” he said on the final day before the Games’ Opening Ceremony. It was the first time that a UN Secretary-General had attended an IOC Session, according to IOC’s press release. Ban Ki-moon praised the joint efforts of the UN and the IOC to use sport as a tool for social change, describing the two organizations as teammates. “That team – the United Nations and the IOC – are not competing on the ski slopes or skating rinks,” he said in the press release. Continue Reading

Minnesota Wild Zach Parise named captain of Sochi Olympic hockey team

Minneapolis native Zach Parise has been named captain of the U.S. Olympic Men’s Ice Hockey Team. USA Hockey announced Friday that Parise, a Minnesota Wild forward who served as an alternate captain for the 2010 Olympic silver medal-winning U.S. team, would be the captain for the 2014 squad which will compete in the upcoming Winter Games in Sochi, according to Dan Scifo of TeamUSA. “Los Angeles Kings’ captain Dustin Brown and Parise’s teammate, Minnesota Wild alternate captain Ryan Suter, were named alternate captains for the 2014 U.S. Olympic Team. Brown and Suter were alternate captains on the U.S. team in 2010. Brown has captained the Kings for six seasons, winning a Stanley Cup in 2012, while Suter has served as an alternate in Minnesota the past two years,” writes Scifo for TeamUSA’s website. Continue Reading